2010 Can The Internet Zoom In On The Local Businesses?

What Is Yelp?

Yelp allows consumers to share the experiences they've had with local businesses and lets business owners share information about their business with their customers. Simply put, it's word of mouth-- amplified

Another company founded in 2004 by two former Paypal employees, Yelp is a local reviews website covering almost 40 states. Yelp also launched in the UK in January 2009. Users write and read reviews about anything from their favorite hole in the wall restaurant to the worst downtown club.

Additionally Yelp offers social networking features: the ability to add friends, groups, events, talk in forums or message contacts. The idea behind this is that users will trust their friend’s reviews more than others.

Yelp screenshot

Businesses have been using the internet for international, national
and local online marketing for many years now. But there are still a
lot of local businesses that don’t use it, despite that nearly 80% of this
country is connected to the internet daily. The internet is happening
now and it’s thefuture of marketing and advertising…specifically
LOCAL marketing.

Think about it, when you’re looking for restaurants, doctors, car
repair shops or any of thousands of businesses you’ll need to actually
visit, what do YOU put in the search field? Chances are you enter your
own town into thesearch so that you don’t just get a list of places all
over the world, right?

Right. As a business owner, it’s vital that your company is
represented online so that it actually shows up in these searches.

There are sites that review businesses as well. Yelp is one of the
most popular social networking websites on the internet. Consumers
go there to find out about local businesses, where they are located
and how they are reviewed by the other members of the site. And
members post their ownreviews after visiting local businesses.

People make decisions based on Yelp results. Last July, Yelp had
8.6 million new visitors, which was an increase of about 80% over
the previous year. So if you have any doubts as to whether local
online marketing is just a fly-by-night gig, you need to dispel them.

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Join the conversation about your business - it's free

Over 26 million people visited Yelp in November 2009 to make spending decisions. To help business owners get the most out of their online presence, Yelp offers a suite of FREE tools for business owners.

  • Communicate with your customers-- privately and publicly
  • Track how many people view your business page
  • Add photos, a detailed business description, up-to-date information, history, and specialties
  • Announce special offers and upcoming events
  • Recommend other businesses

So go and visit this site and see for yourself if this company can impact your local business or small business.


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